Friday, December 30, 2011

The Health Benefits Associated With Eating Beets

Beets are so healthy that you may even consider them to be medicinal. While most people eat the root part of the beet, the greens are also edible, delicious, and equally packed with nutrients. In fact, when beets were first grown on the coast of the Mediterranean, only their greens were eaten. Beet greens are rich in vitamins A and C, as well as iron and calcium.

The more commonly consumed beetroots are an excellent source of a wide variety of nutrients, such as manganese, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, and vitamin B6. Plus, they are rich in fiber. Because of their nutritional density, beets can provide a variety of health benefits when they are consumed. One benefit for which beetroots are very well known is their ability to help cleanse and detoxify the liver. The juice of beetroots has been used throughout history to stimulate the liver's detoxification process.

Recent studies have also shown that beetroots can help the body to fight cancer. Betacyanin, the pigment that gives red beetroots their very deep crimson color, has proven to be a powerful and natural cancer fighting agent. This pigment makes beets both unique and valuable, because it is naturally found in only a small number of plant families. Beetroots are also very high in fiber. This betacyanin and fiber combination makes beetroots terrific at fighting colon cancer.

To reap the maximum health benefits of beets, one should try eating them raw. Most people don't know that you can eat beets raw- but you can, skin and all. Just give them a good scrubbing first, since they are roots. Raw beets have a surprisingly sweet taste. If you prefer not to eat them raw, you can juice them and drink the beet juice. Dried beet root powder can also be found in health food shops. However, as with all fruits and vegetables, it is always best to get your nutrients from the whole food. Additionally, if you consume beet juice, is best not to overdo it, because if you consume too much beet juice at once, your body may produce waste more rapidly than the liver can dispose of it.

Whereas raw beets are best, the nutrients in beets are only slightly diminished when they are cooked. Beet green can be steamed or sautéed, and beet roots can be roasted whole then peeled. You can also try preparing a traditional beet root soup called borscht. However you choose to prepare beets, make them a frequent addition to your diet to enjoy their multiple health benefits.

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